Summer is finally returning, which means it’s time to start entertaining again. If you already have a deck, you know that some of the best parties and conversations take place there. But once summer passes, your deck goes largely unused.
Don’t let your investment go to waste. Your deck can be a gathering place for most of the year if you transform it into a genuine entertainment area.
Here’s how to design an entertainment deck that your neighbours can’t beat.
Install Roofing Above Your Deck
To make your deck usable year-round, you’ll need to have some roofing installed over it. However, this is trickier than it seems. Most decks aren’t designed to carry the weight that comes with a roof, so you’d have to redo the foundation to install a roof.
Another option is under-deck ceiling systems, which are a much lighter way to keep the rain off your deck. Often made from vinyl, these systems use the space under your deck to create a stable base for the ceiling system. Talk to your contractor about the best option for your home.
Set Up a Screen Around Your Deck
To further protect your deck area from the elements, install a screen around the deck. Again, this upgrade can get complicated if your deck came only with a handrail instead of posts that support a roof.
A possible solution, however, is to screen in only a part of your deck to make renovations simpler. With this setup, you can have your entertainment deck attached to your home’s entrance, with unscreened deck space ready for an outdoor grilling party.
Wire Your Deck for Electricity
Now it’s time to make sure your entertainment deck space has electricity. Performing electrical work is complex, especially when it’s for an outdoor space. A simple way to extend power to your entertainment deck is to use a receptacle with a ground fault circuit interrupter (GFCI).
A GFCI is different from a circuit breaker in that it’s supposed to protect you, not just your home’s wiring. If your electrical system ever leaks too much current, the GFCI will cut off the power.
Once you’ve installed the roofing, screen and electricity, you’re finally ready for the fun part of creating an entertainment space.
Install a Television
A television is a must for an entertainment deck, so you can gather friends and family together to watch a sports game into the evening. But indoor televisions just won’t work outside, even after you’ve waterproofed your deck area. They can’t operate in summer temperatures as hot as Australia’s, and if you leave them outside, the condensation will destroy your television set.
So what are your options? You could either buy a weather-proof television or use a rolling television stand to transport your TV between your deck and the rest of the house. Both of these alternatives are costly in their own way. Weather-proof televisions can cost thousands of dollars. Even if you take your indoor television back into the house every night, the weather will still likely break it.
The better option in the long-run is the weather-proof television, so you can claim a warranty if it breaks. (That won’t be the case if you’re rolling indoor televisions outside regularly.)
Pick Great Furniture
Furnish your entertainment deck with vibrant, luxurious furniture that your guests will love. Outdoor furniture will use different fabrics from indoor furniture, but they’ll still be uncomfortable. Wicker chairs with plenty of padding make great options, and you can find sofas made from the same kind of material. Add some end tables throughout the deck, and you’re ready to throw a cosy party well into the fall.
As you can see, transforming a deck into an entertainment centre is a complicated process, but the results are worth it. To establish your house as the neighbourhood’s gathering place, call a contractor to start discussing the details.